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EXERCISE NUTRITION

CREATINE MONOHYDRATE

Creatine is a naturally occurring nutrient that is found in food.

Creatine Monohydrate is the most popular and effective bodybuilding supplement on the market. It is a natural compound produced in the liver, pancreas, and kidneys. Creatine is produced from 3 amino acids; glycine, methionine, and arginine. It supplies energy to our muscles; the muscles convert creatine into a high powered metabolite phosphocreatine (creatine phosphate), which is used to regenerate the muscles' ultimate energy source, ATP (adenosine triphosphate).

Sources of Creatine

Creatine occurs naturally in many foods, with an especially high concentration in red meats and fish such as herring, salmon and tuna. The most common source of creatine is by the nutritional supplement creatine monohydrate. The most common sources include:

  • Creatine Monohydrate - The first creatine product and the least expensive form.
  • Creatine Ethyl Ester - Attached ester increases its bioavailability, absorption, and ergogenic effects. Costs more than regular monohydrate, but gives greater benefits at a lower dose than monohydrate.
  • Creatine Citrate [Di-Creatine Citrate or Tri-Creatine Citrate] - coupled with the Kreb's Cycle intermediate, citric acid for better absorption. It is more expensive than monohydrate and has a lower concentration of creatine.
  • Creatine Malate [Di-Creatine Malate or Tri-Creatine Malate.] - another Kreb's cycle intermediate bound to creatine.
  • Magnesium Creatine Chelate - a mineral chelate of creatine designed to improve the delivery of creatine and magnesium to muscles.
  • Creatine Ester Oratate - a recently introduced esterfied form of creatine.

The highest quality creatine is produced in Germany and USA. Beware of many Asian sources, many are of low quality.

 

How it Works

Creatine, works by increasing the muscle's ability to refuel quickly. Supplementation is aimed at making sure enough creatine is always available for the job.

Creatine supplements speed up delivery of vital nutrients and minerals needed to regulate homocysteine levels in the cells.

 

Physiology

Creatine delivers nutrients and energy to the body’s cells. It then carries waste in the form of hydrogen away from the working muscles and cells. This process improves cell respiration rates, which improves the body’s ability to handle oxygen and carbon monoxide.

The average person holds about 110-130 grams of creatine in thier muscles. Maximum capacity is around 150-170 grams.

 

 

Benefits of Creatine

Creatine can significantly:

  • enhance muscles' growth; increasing lean muscle mass in just a few weeks
  • improve performance in high-intensity exercise - increases both strength and endurance
  • increases energy levels
  • speeds up recovery rates
  • enhances energy reserves in muscles – by its protein synthesizing action
  • super-hydrates muscle cells with water
  • accelerates fat loss
  • preliminary finding support reduced risk of injury

About 90% of those who take creatine achieve a 5-15% improvement in exercise performance.

 

How to Take Creatine

For best results, use powdered creatine combines with a high carbohydrate base, such as dextrose [glucose]. Mix it with non-acidic juice or water. Antioxidant grape juice is a good choice. Take about 30 minutes before training.

Drink any mixed creatine within 6-8 hours of mixing. After this time it loses stability and effectiveness.
Note: Creatine has no caloric value.

There are three methods commonly used:

Loading Method - This is good for first time use and involves loading the muscles with creatine first, then adopting a regular maintenance usage rate. This technique applies to most super nutritional supplements.

  • Load with creatine the first 4 – 7 days, taking 20 to 30 grams per day.
  • Regular intake: 5 – 15 grams per day to keep your muscles saturated

The loading phase helps you reach that effective muscle-creatine saturation point quicker than if you just started out with the regular maintenance dose. This method takes about 30 days to reach the same level you would experience using loading for 5 days.

Graduated Approach - No loading phase; just supplement with 5 - 15 grams per day, everyday.

Cycling Approach - Either:

  • Stay on creatine all the time, reloading once every six weeks; or
  • Load for a week, regular dose for 6 weeks, stop for 2 weeks. Repeat.

 

Side Effects

  • No reported adverse effects have been reported in any studies.
  • While using Creatine, you may notice increased urination, this is purely due to the additional liquids consumed when mixing your Creatine.
  • Wait 3 - 4 hours between doses. Taken too frequently you may experience some stomach discomfort.
  • Athletes on creatine may be tempted to overtrain, and cause themselves injury.

NOTE: it is not recommended to over-supplement once your muscles are saturated with creatine.

 

Recommended Products

Other Products

  1. BSN No-Xplode
  2. Xyience NOX-CG3
  3. Higher Power Micronized Creatine
  4. MuscleTech Cell Tech
  5. MuscleTech Anator P70

Look for 100% pure creatine monohydrate. Avoid mixes with added sugars or carbohydrates; these are not required. The gels are no better than the inexpensive powder. Capsules are ineffective.

Avoid "creatine-added" drinks. They are unstable in liquid and these drinks have never been proven to have the same effect.

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Key Amino Acids for Maximum Performance & Muscle Building

L-Arginine | L-Glutamine | L-Ornithine | L-Glycine | L-Lysine | GABA | DHEA | HGH

 

 


 
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